Seasonal weather changes can wreak havoc on your asphalt surfaces. Over time, your driveway or parking lot will begin to deteriorate if not properly maintained.
This deterioration creates large potholes, unsightly cracks, and unsafe conditions for your family or business.
Asphalt resurfacing vs replacement is a strategic decision to extend the life of your asphalt and protect the surface over time.
What Is Asphalt Resurfacing?
Asphalt resurfacing is a structural repair used to extend the life of your asphalt. It includes removing the top layers of asphalt.
Generally, this is the top three inches of surface material to get to the sub-base. This allows you to inspect the sub-base for any foundational damage.
Then a fresh top layer of asphalt is laid, giving you another 8-15 years of usability.
The Resurfacing Process
It’s important to use a reputable asphalt resurfacing contractor for any asphalt resurfacing in Riverside, CA.
This is an important process and not a DIY project for business and homeowners.
- Preparation –This step allows the entire project to move forward smoothly. To prepare for resurfacing, all obstacles should be removed from the parking lot. This includes signage, curbing, ramps, or any other non-permanent obstacles in the parking lot. The surface should be cleared and alternative parking areas designated for customers or clients.
- Milling – Next, the top layer of the old asphalt is removed. This is referred to as milling and usually takes about a day. During this process, the top one to three inches of your existing asphalt are removed completely and taken to a recycling center
- Pavement Repair – Once milling is complete and the sub-base is exposed, contractors can assess the stability of the foundation to perform any repairs. Then a layer of asphalt is applied to seal the milled area and smooth over any joints or seam
- Asphalt Overlay – Once the surface is ready, the new surface asphalt is applied using rolling and paving machines.
Pros of Asphalt Resurfacing
- Curb Appeal – Resurfacing gives the look of fresh new asphalt without the cost of a full parking lot replacement. The renewed blacktop is a sleek look and gives customers, clients, or buyers a good impression of your property which can increase the resale value of your property.
- Extends Life of Asphalt – If your asphalt surface is less than 20 years old, resurfacing gives you the added boost of another 8-15 years before it needs to be replaced.
- Cheaper – As long as your asphalt foundation is in good condition, resurfacing costs less than half of a full asphalt replacement. Typically, the cost for resurfacing can be $3 – $7 per square foot vs $8 – $15 per square foot for replacement.
- Faster – It takes less time to complete an asphalt resurface than a new asphalt installation, allowing you to get back to business faster.
Cons of Asphalt Resurfacing
- Less Durable – Resurfacing is not the best option when your pavement has been neglected to the point of severe damage. If the foundation is no longer structurally sound, resurfacing will not solve the problem.
- Longevity – Fresh new asphalt will last for 20 years or more whereas a resurface will only provide 8-15 years of longevity before a replacement is inevitable.
What Is Asphalt Replacement?
This involves the total demolition of old asphalt down to the foundation, preparation of a new foundation, and layering of new asphalt on the surface.
Asphalt resurfacing vs replacement are both viable options for your pavement, but replacement is required when the extent of damage is severe and cannot be handled by patching or resurfacing.
The Replacement Process
The process is very similar to installing pavement for the first time.
- Preparation – First, you have to clear the entire surface of all obstructions, parking signage, ramps, or other non-fixed structures. Because asphalt installation takes several days, you should also make a provision for alternative parking where feasible.
- Demolition and Removal – The old asphalt surface must be completely removed down to the foundation. In a resurface, only the top layer is exposed down to the sub-base, but for a full replacement the entire asphalt surface must be demolished, removed, and recycled.
- Leveling – Once you’ve removed the existing asphalt, it’s important to excavate and level the foundation surface. This allows you to engineer proper water drainage to protect your new asphalt surface.
- Subgrade Construction – Subgrade is a material used to create a strong foundation. It is spread uniformly and then wet down and compacted so it’s ready to support the asphalt that will be installed on top.
- Binder Layer – Next, the binder is applied. This is a large aggregate mixed with oil that is applied to the subgrade to make it solid and more lasting.
- Apply New Asphalt – Now you are ready for a new fresh asphalt surface to be poured on top to offer a safe, clean, smooth parking lot or driveway.
- Final Roll – The last step is for a roller truck to compact and smoothen the entire surface before it is ready for everyday use.
Pros of Asphalt Replacement
- Improves Curb Appeal – Brand new asphalt always looks better than cracked, and broken asphalt. Giving your home or business a fresh new entrance increases the curb appeal of your entire property.
- Longevity – Asphalt replacement gives you up to 20 years or more of reliable everyday use of your asphalt surface.
- Durable – Because the foundation is brand new, including a review of your drainage system, leveling, and binders, replaced asphalt is going to be stronger than resurfaced asphalt.
- Cost-Effective – A replacement is more expensive than resurfacing. However, if you have extensive damage, the resurfacing option won’t last long and replacement will be a more cost-effective option long term.
Cons of Asphalt Replacement
- Expensive – An asphalt replacement is a higher upfront cost that represents an investment in your business.
- Time – Typically an asphalt replacement takes a few days longer to complete than resurfacing.
Important Factors to Consider
Driveways and parking lots are exposed to massive forces and extreme weather every day.
Over time, these stresses take their toll and asphalt resurfacing vs replacement is a considerable decision.
While resurfacing can fix many badly damaged asphalt driveways and parking lots, it is not a cure all and sometimes a replacement is necessary.
- Age – If you’re considering resurfacing a surface that is more than 20 years old, you’re better off with a replacement. This is a more cost-effective option and allows you to solve problems all the way down to the foundation.
- Extent of Damage – If the extent of damage is less than 25% – 30%, resurfacing is a great option to fix the damaged area and move forward. However, if you have issues with more than 30 percent of your asphalt surface, or if you’re facing drainage and foundation issues, you need a replacement.
- Cost – If you are constrained by budget, you can go for resurfacing and it will buy you another decade of use. However, have a contractor evaluate the extent of the damage first. Sometimes, the cost-effective option is a replacement even though resurfacing may be less expensive in the short term.
Call for Inspection
When it comes to asphalt resurfacing vs replacement these are not the only available options for you.
At Navarro, we can help your deteriorating with a variety of solutions to serve you and your business.
Give us a call for a free inspection and to discuss all of your options including resurfacing, replacement, seal coating, and patching.
Our no-obligation inspections provide you with the expertise you need to make the best decision for the future of your home or business. Give us a call today!